Picks and Pans Review: Jacqueline Bouvier: An Intimate Memoir
There's something a little unsavory about Davis, the former First Lady's first cousin, making a book out of his memories of her youth. He clearly never knew Jackie that well, hut as a Bouvier family insider he can dissect her parents' nasty divorce (when Jackie was 9) and make a strong case that it was the formative event of her childhood.
Young Jacqueline became intensely private, hiding her shame and anger about the very public and very bitter split that relegated her to poor-relation status—especially after her mother married the spectacularly rich Hugh D. Auchincloss in 1942. Jackie lived in luxury but knew she would never inherit any of it. Davis believes that she thus resolved to marry well—as she did, twice.
What's new here is the pro-Bouvier slant. Jackie's much maligned father, "Black Jack," comes across as a devoted parent, not as the drunken wastrel of previous accounts. Even his failure to walk Jacqueline down the aisle at her wedding to John Kennedy is recast, with the blame assigned to Janet Auchincloss, a mother who never stopped hating her famous daughter's father. (Wiley, $24.95)